(CN) – BASF agreed to sell its high performance pigment technology to settle FTC charges that its acquisition of rival chemical company Ciba Holding violates antitrust laws. The proposed $5.1 billion merger would limit worldwide competition for the two pigments, the FTC said.
The world’s leading chemical company must now sell the rights to the technology to a federally approved buyer within six months.
The pigments in question provide color to a variety of products, including cars, building materials, inks and plastics.
“The Commission’s actions today preserves the competition that would have been lost with this transaction and ensures that consumers do not pay higher prices,” said David Wales, the acting FTC Bureau of Competition Director.